Montana Judge: Previous Gaffes Call for DismissalBy: Lacy Langley - August 29, 2013
The Montana Judge of Yellowstone County, G. Todd Baugh, that is currently under fire for assigning a 30-day sentence for a teacher who raped a student, leading to her suicide, apparently has a track record. His reasoning for the mild punishment is reported to be 1) The girl looked older than her chronological age. 2) He felt she had just as much control over the situation as the teacher.
Ok, in fairness, we all knew that girl in High School who dressed provocatively and demanded attention, whether it was from boys her age or cute teachers. But, come on! That girl we knew didn’t have control over her life at all, right? She definitely wouldn’t be able to back out in that kind of situation. Besides that, teenage girls, by and large, don’t have many rational thoughts during any given day.
This begs the question: So, why is this guy still on the bench? In July(yeah, last month), he sentenced a 55-year-old woman to a 3-year suspended sentence on her 13th drunk driving charge! Meaning: No jail time! Seriously? The most deplorabe thing about this case are the words he lashed her with from the bench. “If you drink and drive and kill someone, you will spend some real time in prison”. If I lived in that town, I would throw a fit. Even the likes of Wil Wheaton know….
What’s baffling is that Baugh has regularly handed down pretty harsh (and fair) sentences to sex offenders over the years. For instance, in September of 2011, he handed down a 100-year sentence to a 26-year old man for raping an 11-year-old boy after luring him to an empty irrigation ditch from a video store.
In 2012, he sentenced a 23-year-old man to 56 years in prison for possesion of child pornography including images of children under age 12. The minimum state mandated sentence is 25 years for that offense. The Billings Gazzette reported that the same man admitted to raping a 13-year-old girl for which Baugh gave him another 10 years.
The judge has issued an apology and offered to explain his comments a little further, but that seems like one mess you can’t back-peddle out of easily.
So, what gives, Judge? Maybe it’s time you started shopping for that Lake house and buying a new set of clubs.